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Inside California Education: Community Colleges – Episode 2

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Inside California Education: Community Colleges – Episode 2


Annc: Coming up on
“Inside California Education: Community Colleges” Amber Woolwine: You
don’t need your own horse, your own saddle, you don’t need your
own rope. It’s provided for you, and they
set you up for success. Annc: Visit a community college
in the small mountain town of Quincy, where students can earn
a four-year bachelor’s degree in ranch management. Meet students in Torrance who
are the first in their family to go to college. They’re getting extra support
from a campus-wide initiative for first-generation students. Julianne Riddle: It reinforced
the importance of getting an education in theater. Because you don’t want to be an
actor who made it by doing a lot of shows. You want to know what you’re
doing, and know the art. Annc: See how a summer theater
program at Riverside City College is helping to recruit
the next generation of theater students. And discover how San Diego City
College launched an urban farming program in the heart of
a major city. It’s all next, on Inside
California Education: Community Colleges! Annc2: Inside California
Education: Community Colleges is made possible by: College
Futures Foundation believes nothing is more transformative
for individuals and our society than an educational opportunity. We partner with organizations
and leaders across California to help students earn college
degrees regardless of zip code, skin color, or income. More information at
collegefutures.org. ♪♪ ♪♪ Kevin: We’re in
beautiful Quincy, California. It’s in Plumas County. It’s North Eastern California. Feather River College has been
here since 1968. Just celebrated our 50th
Anniversary at Feather River College. We have a very strong reputation
as the horse college. We joke and say, you ever seen a
horse that’s been to college? (Neigh) Kevin: When the law was
finally passed that allowed community colleges to have
bachelor’s degrees, The rule was we could not duplicate any
program that a California State
University offered. Fifteen colleges were allowed to
offer a bachelor’s degrees, And we submitted the Bachelor of
Equine and Ranch Management as a proposal to the state. Russell: We had to start the
curriculum from zero. We didn’t have any curriculum
for a four-year degree. So what we did we just said,
well, let’s take a job description of what we would
like our students to be able to do. You had to know something about
cattle, and you had to know something about horses. Amber: I originally wanted to go
to Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, but they didn’t have any majors
I was interested in. And after doing research and FRC
kept popping up, And when I clicked on it, they had a big
flyer announcing that they were awarded the ability to offer
their new Bachelor’s degree starting in 2016, which is when
I was heading off to college. So I came, and checked out the
college and the town, and everything fell into place from
there. JP: So today we’ll go ahead and
process the calves we have, we have 25 calves to process. My name is JP Tanner. I am the Beef Professor for
Feather River College. Ok, any questions? (mooing) J.P.: Now that we’re dialing
into careers, once they get to their Junior and Senior year,
you want to make sure that they are dialed into their area that
they want to have a career in long-term. Student: So since I’m getting
this all in there, I don’t have to worry about air bubbles.
J.P.: Yep. J.P.: It’s changed the way I
teach as an instructor, because now I need to be more in-depth
in my courses. Amber: They have classes on
packing, they have classes like working with cows, and they have
classes where you are riding, and that was all very new to me. In the last year, I jumped more
to the cow side of things. Horses will always be in my
life, but they will be in my life more as a hobby. And I’m very interested in cows
and the production, maintenance and management of cattle. Honestly, I love anything with
cows. Quinton herding cattle Shh shhh
shh! We can just bring these three. Quinton: I want to go become a
ranch manager, but after school, I’m going to go start working on
a ranch and working my way up. Quinton: I’m from
Bend, Oregon. I was born on a farm and I came
here to play baseball and was just planning on doing a
two-year associate’s degree, and then I finally realized that
they are offering a four-year program in ranch management
and that’s something that
I want to do. So I decided that’s what I want
to do. Russell: The biggest question
that there’s probably asked of me by parents, by students, when
they come here is okay. What can my son or daughter do
if they go here? And what can they do if they are
here for two years and what can they do for four years? And of course my standard uh
response uh back to that, well, depends on the student. Kevin: We had a graduate last
year who got hired up by Ted Turner’s Ranch in Montana. He’s the largest landowner in
Montana and has one of the largest ranches in the United
States. So he’s a manager up there. We’ve had students open up horse
therapy programs. One has a riding program for
severe mental or brain injuries. There’s other ones that have
been doing agricultural lending. We’ve had people work
with beef cattle. We actually have graduates that
are doing training programs for horses, how to train horses
as well. Eloy: Throughout the country,
many community colleges have begun to offer bachelor’s
degrees. So this is something new for
California, so these 15 programs were created to not only test to
see how it would work in California, but also to give us
the opportunity to expand our reach, to help communities, to
help regions satisfy the demand for technical expertise. And hopefully we’ll be able to
expand beyond those 15 in the future. Holly petting horses Yes, kids,
yes kids Holly: I’m from
Brentwood, California. I’ve never been a big city
person, and I’ve always loved the mountains and it was just
the combination of horses and mountains, and it just felt
right to me. My two siblings before me, they
spent a lot of money in college and The lower cost is a great
help, especially when you are trying to do other things and
balance being a student. Kamdyn: I don’t think everyone
can afford to pay thousands of dollars per year to go to
college, and it’s something that I wanted to do. And it’s something important to
get a degree, but it’s not affordable for everyone. And this is so important because
I can get my four-year degree, but at a price that is not going
to cost me a lot in the future, but is so beneficial. Kevin: The way the program was
designed the total cost would be under $10,000. That includes all four years. That’s not per year. That’s for all four years. Amber: I am getting, in my
opinion, a better education, more up my alley, like with a
lot more things that I’m interested in, for a small,
small fraction of the cost. And plus, I’m getting more
one-on-one time with each of the instructors. I t’s a huge difference of
having a class filled with 50 kids, to ten. So we are able to advance our
skills, a lot better, a lot faster, and get more one-on-one
time. And in my opinion, I’m getting a
better education than I could have gotten anywhere else. Kamdyn: I get to do stuff I
never thought I’d be able to do. Work with mares, breed horses,
halter break babies. Just all kinds of stuff that I
thought I’d never be able to do, but this has given me that
opportunity and I’m so thankful for it. Annc: The pilot program allowing
15 community colleges to offer bachelor’s degrees will expire
in 2026 unless new legislation is signed. In the meantime, students can
earn four-year degrees in areas that include airframe
manufacturing technology, dental hygiene, mortuary science and
respiratory care. ♪♪ Gloria: It’s just amazing to
hear that I was not alone. Michael: “Not alone” – instead,
surrounded by fellow students experiencing the same
new and challenging chapter in their lives. That’s what this First Gen
circle is all about at El Camino College in Torrance. Everyone here is the first in
their family to attend college. Seranda Bray leads the group. Seranda: When I was a first-year
student, there weren’t first-gen initiatives like this. And so sometimes I did feel like
all, you know, this is just me having this experience, everyone
else has it together, they know, but I think it’s really
beautiful when you get to see like, oh my gosh, we are all
part of this together. As first gen students, we have,
like, mad skills, y’all (laughs). We come with so many strengths
and so many things that we’ve learned growing up… Michael: Seranda is part
of a campus-wide initiative helping
first-generation students navigate the brand-new and often
intimidating college experience. Help includes early steps like
signing up for classes, scheduling office hours with
professors, even securing financial aid and career
counseling. Perhaps most important, quelling
any signs of discouragement or self-doubt. Seranda: And so what I share
with students is checking those negative voices that sometimes
creep into our psyche, and also reminding them that you have,
like, you’ve earned, you’ve worked very hard, like, it’s not
luck! Elizabeth: It was hard, you
know, in the beginning especially. Once again, you feel lost, you
feel like an imposter, you feel like you’re not good enough, but
I’m grateful for the resources I have. It’s amazing to have this
community and these people who are going through the
same thing as you. Michael: El Camino College has
almost thirty thousand full and part-time students. More than half of them are first
generation. It’s a percentage similar to
many other community colleges throughout California. Francisco: For first-generation
students, and I’m one myself, so I could speak to it first hand,
the language of higher education is in some cases foreign. It’s a foreign language. So we have to somehow demystify
he college-going process. Dena: Many students have a
deficit mindset. I’m coming in with all these
barriers and how can I think I’ll be successful. I don’t belong here. This isn’t for me. ♪♪ Michael: Dena Maloney, president
of El Camino College, says the idea for a major First Gen
initiative began with her faculty members. Maloney, also a first-generation
college graduate, embraced the plan, and soon enough, so did
the entire campus. Dena: It turns out that almost
120 of our faculty members are first generation students. We help students see we were
first gen at one point. We were in your shoes, and look
how far we’ve gone and that’s how far you can go if you want. Gloria: My career goal is to
open up a bakery. Gloria: It helped me to know
that I wasn’t alone, that I wasn’t the only student feeling
this, and it provided a community, and for me that was a
huge, huge thing.” Darrell: What do you have here? Michael: Darrell Thompson is
another first -generation college graduate and one of the
professors who helped create the program. He often brings that shared
experience into his instruction – in this class, he’s invited
students to share images they’ve captured reflecting some of
their challenges. “That block of time that
students have, especially first generation students…” Darrell: Being a teacher
is so rewarding on its own, but to transform
these lives that they didn’t think were transformable, maybe
they weren’t qualified or it wasn’t meant for them… It’s a
really wonderful feeling and it’s super fulfilling. “My Mom would put high school or
equivalent.” Michael: Brian Gomez went
straight from a small-town high school to UC Merced. But the adjustment was
difficult, and he dropped out. Now, he says he’s much more
confident as a student, and after finishing at El Camino
he plans to return to the university, get a master’s
degree, and become a college counselor. Brian: They’ve helped me out so
much. If it wasn’t for them, you know,
reaching out and picking me up, I wouldn’t be where I am today,
and I would love to do that for other people in the future. ♪♪ Michael: Studies show programs
like this help students stay in school and often graduate
sooner. Because of its success, El
Camino was the only community college receiving top honors
from First Forward, a nationwide program started by the
non-profit Center for First Generation Student Success. Seranda: I would love to see all
115 community colleges in the state of California develop a
first-gen initiative based on our formula, or tailoring it to
your own campus. Dena: All students should have
access to these kinds of resources. If we can make that happen,
it’ll be fabulous. Michael: These students say
college offers a chance to change the trajectory of their
own lives… that of their families’ …and even their
communities. With knowledge comes power, new
economic opportunities… and a better future. Brian: I see that there’s other
people that are going through similar things as me, and it
made me feel confident as a student because now I feel ready
for the world. Elizabeth: If somebody tells you
you can’t do it, prove to them that you can do it and you are
capable and you’re good enough and you can do it! ♪♪ Annc: Still ahead on
“Inside California Education: Community Colleges”
Dig into an ‘urban farming’ program that’s offered
in one of the state’s biggest cities, San Diego. But first… a theater program
at Riverside City College is drawing high schoolers from
around the region for its popular summer program. ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪ (The Wiz Rehearsal) ♪ Jose: Theater is such a nice
way to bring people together in a community. ♪♪ It sparks people wanting to work
together and people getting along and it’s just a really
healthy environment that I think people need to have in their
lives in some way, shape or form. Rob: Jose Gonzalez is a student
at Riverside City College, working toward his transfer
degree so he can someday be a theater teacher himself. Like many students, he found his
way here through the stage… specifically, the college’s
Summer Conservatory Program. It’s designed for local middle
and high school students. Jodi: It’s a six week program
and over the course of that six weeks we teach a kid how to put
on a show. The middle school and high
school kids act as the ensemble, and the college kids are kind of
the equity actors. Jodi: Okay, reset, top of show,
here we go. Rob: Theater chair Jodi Julian
created the Summer Conservatory Program to keep teenagers busy
during the summer months. But it’s turned into a powerful
recruiting tool for Riverside City College… .showing local
students that the community college has a theater program as
impressive as those at larger institutions. Jodi: Not a lot of kids can
afford those big four-year colleges at first, so these,
two-year programs really need to step up and really be exciting
for them as they would be going to USC or UCLA. Jose: I think the problem with a
lot of kids who come to community college is that they
have the preconceived notion that community college isn’t
good. I don’t believe in that. I believe that all school is
good and so I think it depends on the student. I think if you’re willing to
push yourself and you have the drive to get the work done, then
you’re going to succeed wherever you go. And that’s why I love this
program, because the kids in it and the community is so
fantastic that it makes you want to work harder, it makes you
want to be better. Gregory: There’s nobody who
can’t act, there’s nobody who can’t succeed in college. And our faculty and our staff
have a unique ability to bring out that potential in every
student from every background who comes here. ♪ (The Wiz Rehearsal) ♪ Rob: This summer’s program has
about 100 participants of all ages. Today, the cast is rehearsing
for it’s upcoming performance of The Wiz … a unique take on The
Wizard of Oz. ♪ (The Wiz Rehearsal) ♪ Julianne: I’m playing Dorothy
Gale, she is a little farm girl from Kansas who bumps her head
and kind of just grows from this little girl into mentally
an adult. ♪ (The Wiz Rehearsal) ♪ Within a week of getting my
role, I had to be completely off book. I didn’t know it would be so
fast paced, but I’ve grown quite accustomed to it. And I just think I’ve grown as
an actor for it. Rob: Growing your craft is the
main focus here, whether you’re a talented high school actor
like Julianne, or a college student learning set design. Those who go on to enroll in
Riverside City College can earn technical theater certificates,
musical theater certificates or transfer degrees. Jodi: I really encourage them to
get these certificates and go work for a little while until
they know for sure which college or which path they want to take. So we have a lot of kids that
are working, doing national tours. We have kids that are working at
Disney, Knott’s Berry Farm, Universal Studios. They want to complete something,
so the certificates are really great and really easy to obtain
if they stay with us for two years. Julianne: From my background, I
wasn’t able to afford to go straight to a four year. So when I came to RCC I heard
they had a good arts program. And I immediately walked into
Jodi Julian’s office and sat down and was like what classes
do I take? What do I need to do? Rob: For students like Julianne
Riddle, the community college system is an ideal place to test
the waters… to explore careers in theater… to see how she can turn her
dreams into reality. Julianne: All our directors
treat the program like a professional program because
we’re trying to go into. So I think that draws high
school students. We’re not just a community
college theater. No, you’re going to be trained
like a professional and how you’re going to be treated when
you do professional theater. And that’s really attractive to
young students like me and all these high school students here. Gregory: What we’re trying to do
through this activity, and through so many other
opportunities, is to bring on thousands of students
from the community. We’re saying that they matter. We’re saying that this is their
home and they will succeed here. ♪♪ Annc: What can you do with
a theater degree? Some occupations include actor,
playwright, teacher, stage manager, costume and set design,
and arts administration. ♪♪ Kristen: IN THE MIDDLE OF THE
SECOND LARGEST CITY … IN THE NATION’S MOST
POPULOUS STATE. ONE THING YOU MIGHT NOT EXPECT
TO SEE … IS A FARM. ♪♪ Erin: Alright groups, please
test the moisture level and let me know if your beds are
the correct moisture level for tillage. Erin: We are at um Seeds at City
Urban Farm. Seeds at City Urban Farm is the
outdoor lab for the sustainable urban agriculture program at
City College. Kristen: THIS “OUTDOOR LAB” IS
ONE OF THREE PLOTS AT SAN DIEGO CITY COLLEGE DEDICATED TO THE
SCHOOL’S SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE PROGRAM. COMBINED, THE PLOTS MAKE UP
ABOUT AN ACRE, WHERE STUDENTS GET HANDS-ON EXPERIENCE WHILE
WORKING TOWARD AN ASSOCIATE DEGREE OR CERTIFICATE. Erin: 18:00 six point two to
six point eight is prime. That’s what you want for
vegetable crops, right? Kristen: CLASSES WITHIN THE
SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE PROGRAM COVER EVERYTHING FROM SOIL
SCIENCE… TO VEGETABLE PRODUCTION… TO FOOD
PRESERVATION. Mike: Typically our class, we
start with a lecture and then we get our garden gloves and our
big sun hats and we go to one of three farm sites that are on the
campus. Dominique: On a day to day basis
we do transplanting, we do weeding, we do bed prep… Erin: It adds a lot of
real-world connection to what we’re talking
about in the classroom. It gives them a lot of
experience in it. And then in some of our classes
we really focus on skills building because it is a career
technical education program. So it’s really important to have
this space that students can build the skills they need to be
able to work in agriculture in the future. Kristen: THOSE SKILLS CAN
TRANSLATE TO A VARIETY OF CAREERS… FROM THE CULINARY
ARTS TO INSECT BIOLOGY. Rosie: For me personally, I want
to educate younger children and our future generations… Kristen: ROSIE O’BRIEN
ALREADY HAS A 4-YEAR DEGREE IN SUSTAINABILITY,
AND TURNED TO THIS PROGRAM AS A WAY TO GET SOME PRACTICAL
EXPERIENCE. Rosie: I am really passionate
about having the knowledge for myself of how to grow fruits and
vegetables and just become more sustainable as a person overall. Kristen: FOR MIKE BLAKELY, IT’S
PART OF A VITICULTURE APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAM THROUGH
HIS EMPLOYER. IT’S ALSO A WAY TO EXPAND HIS
CULINARY KNOWLEDGE. Mike: I’ve been working in
restaurants and bars like forever and I’m familiar with
like food and thought I knew something about food and like
for example there’s a plant right over there that’s fennel. And I had no idea what fennel
was as a plant. I had only seen it on a plate. Kristen: AND FOR DOMINIQUE
BLANCHE, IT’S A WAY TO RECOVER FROM THE EMOTIONAL SCARS THAT
CAME WITH HIS PREVIOUS CAREER… AS A COMBAT SYSTEMS TECHNICIAN
IN THE U-S NAVY. Dominique: Getting out of the
military I was looking for something that was somewhat
therapeutic that would you know give me something back to deal
with the issues I was dealing with as far as my disabilities. Kristen: HE HOPES TO START A
SMALL BUSINESS FOCUSED ON SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE… AS WELL AS A NONPROFIT THAT
WOULD ALLOW OTHER VETERANS TO EXPERIENCE THE HEALING HE HAS
FOUND THROUGH FARMING. Dominique: It motivates me to be
better but it also gives me an opportunity to like find
community. Coming here every day gives me
something to be motivated and happy to do every single day. ♪♪ Erin: If everybody could grab
two stakes, measure out each end of your bed to be two feet so we
have that … Kristen: PROFESSOR
ERIN MCCONNELL HOPES THE PROGRAM CONTINUES
TO ATTRACT STUDENTS WITH DIVERSE BACKGROUNDS…
INCLUDING THOSE FROM URBAN ENVIRONMENTS WHERE FARMS ARE
MOSTLY FOREIGN. Erin: A lot of San Diego –
especially areas like southeastern San Diego are what
people call food deserts or food swamps actually …so it’s a
really important in those areas for people to start to learn how
to grow their own food. Maybe get involved in a
community garden to try and improve and increase the
availability of local produce and produce in those areas. Kristen: CITY COLLEGE OFFICIALS
HOPE THIS SMALL PLOT OF LAND, ONCE A GRASSY AREA ADJACENT TO A
PARKING LOT, CAN SERVE AS AN EXAMPLE OF HOW URBAN FARMING CAN
HAPPEN ANYWHERE. Randy: Even though there’s a
land issue in San Diego and in particular downtown, um there
are pockets of space just like this one where you can grow
enough produce for maybe a neighborhood or a restaurant or
a small store. Kristen: MONEY EARNED THROUGH
HARVESTING THESE FRUITS AND VEGETABLES GOES BACK INTO THE
PROGRAM, AND ALSO HELPS WITH ADVANCING THE MISSION
OF THE COLLEGE. Randy: City colleges commitment
to social justice and environmental sustainability is
embedded in our mission and this program really supports that by
giving people the opportunity to be self-sufficient, healthy,
environmentally conscious Kristen: STUDENTS SAY THE TIME
THEY’VE SPENT IN THIS OUTDOOR LAB HAS DEFINITELY MADE THEM
MORE ENVIRONMENTALLY CONSCIOUS AND MORE COMMITTED TO PURSUING
THEIR GOALS, WITH THE KNOWLEDGE THAT SUSTAINABLE FARMING IS
CRUCIAL TO OUR FUTURE. Mike: The more people we have,
the more land we need to live on, and we’re not getting any
more land and so what we’re learning here is how to make
small spaces super productive. And I think that’s not just
relevant, it’s super necessary these days. ♪♪ Annc: That’s it for this edition
of Inside California Education: Community Colleges. If you’d like more information
about the program, log on to our website insidecaled.org. You can watch stories from all
of our shows, and you can connect with us on social media. Thanks for joining us. We’ll see you next time on
Inside California Education ♪♪ ♪♪ Annc2: Inside California
Education: Community Colleges is made possible by: College
Futures Foundation believes nothing is more transformative
for individuals and our society than an educational opportunity. We partner with organizations
and leaders across California to help students earn college
degrees regardless of zip code, skin color, or income. More information at
collegefutures.org. ♪♪

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1 thought on “Inside California Education: Community Colleges – Episode 2”

  1. Monish Kumar says:

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